BlackBerry users on Sprint’s network will finally have a device with both a modern operating system, and a physical keyboard to pick up beginning August 30th. That’s when Sprint will launch the BlackBerry Q10.
According to a press release made available by the carrier today, BlackBerry watchers can expect the BlackBerry Q10 to arrive on August 30th for $199. That pricing is after a two-year service agreement. Users won’t need to sign-up for a pre-order, instead Sprint says all users will be able to get their hands at their local Sprint Store, its website and through its business channels.
The release of the BlackBerry Q10 on Sprint comes nearly three months after the device arrived on American shores. AT&T launched the device on its network back in June for $199, with Verizon and T-Mobile following soon after. Even then, the amount of time it took BlackBerry to bring Americans a proper successor to the best-selling BlackBerry Curve device drew some criticism.
In retrospect, other carrier launchers weren’t nearly as strange as Sprint’s. BlackBerry announced the BlackBerry Q10 back in January of this year, putting Sprint’s launch of the BlackBerry Q10 7 months after the device first debuted. In a world where smartphones are replaced by devices with faster chipsets and updated designs every year, the BlackBerry Q10 could very well be at the tail-end of its life cycle.
That isn’t to say that the BlackBerry Q10 won’t be a significant upgrade for users who have a QWERTY keyboard equipped BlackBerry already. The Blackberry Q10’s internals include a 1.5 GHZ dual-core processor with 2GB of RAM, an 8 megapixel rear-facing camera, a 2 megapixel camera, LTE data-connectivity and 16GB of on-board storage. Instead of the less usable, pressure sensitive touchscreens that previous BlackBerry devices used, the BlackBerry Q10 comes equipped with a 3.1-inch AMOLED display. That is the same touchscreen technology used inside Apple’s iPhone and other modern devices.
In addition to its modern display, users picking up the BlackBerry Q10 can also look forward to the first QWERTY keyboard-equipped BlackBerry device to feature BlackBerry 10, BlackBerry’s modern operating system. While BlackBerry 10 doesn’t include some of the encryption and email features of its earlier counterpart, BlackBerry OS, it does introduce many of software features that users crave. That includes an updated version of the BBM messaging client, and notifications using BlackBerry Hub.
In our review of the BlackBerry Q10, GottaBeMobile found the device to be a decent upgrade for BlackBerry users. However, its list of missing features made it a non-story for anyone with an iPhone or Android device, an opinion that isn’t helped by it’s now 8-month old specifications and premium price tag on Sprint.